Aspire to Inspire 178: Andrew Wilson

Life sometimes has a funny way of getting in the way of our expectations. As they say, “life happens.” Outside factors whether they be family oriented or not, can easily steer us off the path we had originally set out on, leaving us with an unclear grasp of what lies ahead.

For Andrew Wilson, moving around a lot had a significant effect on him and the manner in which he interacted with others. He was born in Southern California, but also lived in Texas and Arizona for a time as well. His father is a pilot for Southwest Airlines so moving from place to place wasn’t out of the ordinary. For a lot of kids that relocate frequently, it can be tough to open up and form deep connections with others when the possibility of leaving again could be just around the corner. This led to Andrew developing a rather shy personality.

That shyness seemed to dissipate, however, when music came into question.

“My first love was alternative music – bands like Paramore and Panic! At the Disco was really my scene back then. I would go to the meet and greets, be against the bar the whole time, and I was young. I was in junior high at that point. That was what started my love for music. I’ve fallen out of love with these genres a bit now unfortunately, but that was what I really enjoyed to do back in my earlier life. I was moving around a lot, which really made me shy so being able to go to these concerts made me feel happy and accepted. I was really having fun and could actually be myself even at a young age.”

Andrew’s interests soon shifted to the electronic music scene as he got a bit older and started to follow the footsteps of his older family members. When his older brother and cousins planned to attend EDC 2008 at the LA Coliseum, he jumped at the opportunity to experience something new.

“We naturally look up to the people that are older than us and I just looked up to them and wanted to do what they did. I was very intrigued. I’m not sure exactly how it came about, but the summer after my freshman year of high school they were planning to go to EDC at the Coliseum and I got a ticket to go with them. That was my first ever EDM show or rave. I felt the love and thought ‘Oh my gosh, what is this?’ That was the major transition for me. I had finally found a place where I felt so happy and so accepted. It just instantly changed my life.”

From that moment on, music became a constant in Andrew’s life. Unfortunately, he had not realized how much of a role it was playing until after he had fallen on hard times.

Change can be a lot for a young kid, especially when there is a lot of it at once. Andrew’s parents had divorced, leaving him feeling torn between them. He had moved again, which felt like he was starting all over from the beginning, and soon had to deal with the illness and eventual loss of his mother. All of this happening within a year’s time made Andrew feel as though his life had been turned upside down.

As he searched for something in the world to make him feel centered, or at the very least, a sense of normalcy, it led to legal trouble as he started to look in more dangerous places.

“All of it happened so fast and then led to legal trouble because I was searching for something bigger than myself and trying to feel accepted and noticed. I unfortunately did not find acceptance as I got into more and more trouble. I was abusing drugs and alcohol. It was probably one of the darkest chapters of my life where I was just using everybody, stealing, and just not the person that I want to be ever again. I went to shows under the influence and did a lot of things that were dangerous. I put my friends and me into situations that were unsafe as well. There were times that something really bad could have happened. That was my way of doing what I needed to do and it was just a really dark time. I am very grateful that all of this is behind me. My hope is that I can show somebody that no matter what they’re going through, as long as they keep working hard and make positive life changes, it is all going to be worth it. It will be hard, but it will be worth it in the long run.”

At the young age of 20, Andrew made the tough decision to get sober and turn his life around. It wasn’t until then that he truly realized how important music was in his life and how it provided an unrivaled amount of support and therapy for him. He tells us, laughing, that even now his friends give him a bit of a hard time at shows and events because he usually ends up shedding a few tears.

But that is what music does. It heals, but isn’t afraid to bring out our deepest emotions in the process. Artists like Above & Beyond and Kaskade have lent a hand in that process for Andrew.

“I actually have two Above & Beyond-inspired tattoos. I just feel like their music has always promoted a lot of positivity in a world that is so filled with hate. It’s easy to get sidetracked by all of that and this gave me the ability to love myself and others. I had the honor of meeting Kaskade as well last year and he is one of my idols. I know that he’s sober for I think religious reasons, but it was really cool for me to meet him and say ‘hey the first rave I ever went to when I was six months sober was one of yours on my 21st birthday.’ I was blown away and it was the best time I’ve ever had. Those are definitely people that I look up to.”

There are a lot of Andrews out there in the rave and dance music community. There are stories upon stories that involve dark times and loss, but what most of them have in common is healing. It is tough to support the case of the rave scene’s unfortunate stereotype when there are so many individuals with stories of inspiration and bravery.

By sharing his story, Andrew hopes that some of the stigma will fade and people will understand that there is so much more to it than partying. Beyond that, he wishes that his story helps others find a way out of their own dark times.

Here we leave you with Andrew’s final thoughts on the power of music.

“Music has always been something that has allowed me to connect with people that are not here anymore. That includes my mom and unfortunately, one of best friends Evan who passed away from drug addiction. Music has allowed me to connect and feel them with me on a deep level. I did want to share one of my favorite song lyrics from Above & Beyond’s song “Peace of Mind”…

“It will be only a matter of time, before your life comes through for you.”

Life happens but as long as you hold on and push forward you can overcome anything. Thank you so much for taking the time to interview me. Music has connected me to complete strangers, even for a moment, and allows us to forget about the problems of the world and live in peace.”

~~~

If you or anyone you know is suffering from any form of substance abuse or addiction, do not hesitate to act. Taking a screening can help determine if additional help is required. Visit www.mhascreening.org to take a free, confidential, and anonymous alcohol or substance use screen. Visit Mental Health America to learn more about recognizing addiction symptoms and offering support before and throughout recovery. Several global online and regional recovery support communities can be found at the links below:

Mental Health America
To Write Love On Her Arms

Visit JED’s Mental Health Resource Center for information, resources, and tips for how to help yourself or a loved one.

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Aspire to Inspire 178: Andrew Wilson

Your EDM Interview With Ali Tamposi, Co-Writer On Selena Gomez & Kygo’s “It Ain’t Me”

Though it’s widely known, and often in the back of our heads the whole time, we regularly choose to forget that massive artists have teams of writers behind them. In the case of EDM, this is the case far, far less often – with bedroom producers making up a bulk of the music being released on any day, there’s less chance that someone was getting paid to write a song that only got 50,000 plays on Soundcloud than being struck by lightning.

However, when you have a collaboration between major artists like Kygo and Selena Gomez, a writer or two is going to come into play. The two recently released their collaboration “It Ain’t Me,” which has been getting pretty rave reviews for returning to a more natural sound for Kygo; and for Selena, her vocals were obviously the focal point. But the lyrics of the track are in part due to the efforts of Ali Tamposi, who is credited as a co-writer on the track, and has also written songs such as DJ Snake and Justin Bieber’s “Let Me Love You” and Kelly Clarkson’s “Stronger.”

Ali Tamposi is a recent addition to Reservoir’s music publishing roster, which we’re sure they’re extremely pleased with right now. We reached out to Reservoir and Tamposi to get some of the writer’s thoughts on her recent work, as well as where she sees herself in the future.

Describe your songwriting process. Where do you begin when tasked with creating a new track?

Most of the time I’m collaborating with Andrew Watt and Brian Lee and we all just get into a room, order food and talk about what’s going on in our lives. Andrew or Brian will typically pick up the guitar – and Andrew will usually come in with a guitar riff that he prepared – and we’ll all shout out melodies until we land on one. The song usually comes together from there – we write the lyrics, I’ll cut vocals, we high-five and wrap up our session.

What inspired the lyrics behind the songs you’ve worked on? Your own experiences, or something completely different?

It’s a combination of our experiences – we act as if we’re therapists for one another. If I’m going through something, Andrew and Brian will be my therapists and we’ll tap into that place and vice-versa. We’ll ask questions about that experience and it usually goes from there. We’ll be like “What did it actually feel like when you’re at the bar and waiting for that person to call you and they’re not calling?” so it’s that type of vibe. It’s honest – everything that we write comes from past experiences that we’ve all felt. If it doesn’t come from that place, then it feels disconnected.

How were you connected to Kygo’s team? Have you gotten the chance to interact with the man himself throughout this process?

Andrew Watt knows Kygo and his manager just from working together in the past. Kygo’s manager reached out to Andrew and asked to come into the session, so Andrew facilitated that for us. We’ve been able to build a relationship with Kygo from there and from a producer-level – aside from his DJ work – he’s one of the greatest producers that I’ve had the pleasure of working with.

How did the experience of working on the new song compare to your previous gigs? Would you work with Kygo again if given the chance?

This one, it just felt like it all connected. I don’t really deal with the business side of things and that’s the beauty of working with my team – they allow me to step away from the business. When Kygo heard this song, he was instantly mapping out where he was going to take it. He followed the melodies and emotions of the song and brought it to life. It all aligned. Usually, we’ll wait around for a few months, try pitching a song to different artists and hopefully something sticks. When Selena heard it, she loved it – she heard it about a month after we wrote it.

Would you work with Kygo again if given the chance?

Definitely, he’s a musical genius and plays the piano like nobody I’ve ever heard. He doesn’t overcomplicate songs, he leaves space to let the lyrics and melody drive the song. He connects to songs with depth and meaning. He’s such a wonderful presence in the studio and really inspiring.

“Let Me Love You” with Justin Bieber and DJ Snake became such a massive success in the pop and EDM realms. When creating a new track like “It Ain’t Me,” do you have a sense of the song’s potential before it’s officially released? How can you tell when you have a hit on your hands?

Honestly, I know when a song has the potential to be a hit after it’s written. But I really never know if it’s a hit until it’s a hit.

What are your thoughts on creating music under your own name? Is it something you’ve done/would like to do at some point, or are you satisfied with being a bit more “behind-the-scenes”?

I don’t really envision that for my future, I know where my strengths are. My strengths are sitting in the studio and getting my message across through different artists. Working with Reservoir has really opened a new world for me as a songwriter too and I’m looking forward to continuing to grow with them. They’ve provided a strong support system that fits my creativity.

When I create, I come from a place of being a messenger from a higher power of some sort that shows me how to funnel out a message. I feel like the artist is that ultimate goal to funnel out my message. I feel so stimulated doing what I’m doing. I don’t know what the future holds – I don’t mind doing features. I feel like my purpose on this Earth is to sit in the passenger’s seat next to the artist and help navigate through the journey of everything.

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Your EDM Interview With Ali Tamposi, Co-Writer On Selena Gomez & Kygo’s “It Ain’t Me”

JOYRYDE Releases His Latest Bass House Heater, “I Ware House”

If you’ve seen JOYRYDE recently at all, you’ve heard this one. It’s one of the hardest tracks in his sets now, and we’re damn happy about it. Entitled “I Ware House,” this one is an homage to the warhouse rave movement of the early ’90s.

Though it still sounds modern in its execution, a lot of the rhythms and samples – and absolutely the meaning behind the track – come from ’90s house. And after the house section, JOYRYDE even goes hard trap in what is definitely one of the most surprising drops of the year so far. Even after that, there’s another dope drop we guarantee you won’t see coming.

i hope u all enjoy my new track.. i shot a video in a warehosue in downtown LA 2 days after i arrived to LA over a year ago i filmed in an old warehouse downtown but the footage came out unusable. i always felt like i owed it to that place to finish the job. so we went back down there and re shot these scenes. didnt want to shoot a professional dance routine or choreography, i wanted to shoot how normal people feel and move.. i wanted it to be natural.. music i hope you like my new video and track. J

Check out the official video below, grab your free download here and check out his upcoming tour dates below.

JOYRYDE North American tour dates

Feb 24 – The Yost, Santa Ana – C.A.R stage

Feb 25 – Metropolitan, New Orleans

Mar 04 – Bassmnt, San Diego

Mar 07 – Papas & Beer, Rosarito

Mar 08 – La Santa, Puerto Vallarta

Mar 10 – Site 1A, Milwaukee

Mar 17 – The Mid, Chicago

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: JOYRYDE Releases His Latest Bass House Heater, “I Ware House”

Tchami’s Prophecy Tour Takes House Music to New Heights [Event Review]

The first week of Tchami‘s Prophecy Tour found him hitting up several Florida cities, one of which was surprisingly Gainesville, Florida. Not known for its robust EDM scene, Gainesville bringing an artist like Tchami for such a major tour was a shock. But, given that the line just to get into the show wrapped around the Florida Theater venue, the demand was clearly there.

Photo: Ben Weickert Photography

Tchami’s Prophecy Tour promised intricate production and plenty of house and future bass, and the promise was delivered well in full. ANGELZ, a rising producer on Tchami’s Confession record label, held the opening slot quite well, giving attendees a taste of his unique blend of bass house and hip-hop. ANGELZ hasn’t played too many shows yet, but with a background of producing for Def Jam in the 2000s, he’s no novice to the music world. ANGELZ refrained from giving the audience too much of the Confessions-type sound, but still delivered a bass-heavy opening set.

Photo: Ben Weickert Photography

After a few minutes of set-up, Tchami’s Prophecy Tour production rig came to light. He dove straight into giving fans the bass house anthems they craved as the stain glass-esque LEDs blinked black, red and white with light speed. The sold-out crowd’s energy could be felt all the way from the rail to the back of the venue, a rare unity among a crowd in a college town. Tchami’s hits like his “Turn It Up” remix, “After Life” and “Untrue” played well even for relative newcomers to the EDM scene, and his foray into more traditional house music such as his new track “Adieu” lured even hardcore bass house fans to the lighter side of house. Tchami’s set navigated genres swiftly yet elegantly, all while maintaining the constant attention of the crowd.

Photo: Ben Weickert Photography

In terms of production, the Prophecy Tour really reinforced Tchami’s priest-like image. The LEDs mimicked stain glass windows and flickered with a heavenly glow. Halfway through the set, a choral track erupted as Tchami took his hands off the decks and prayed, and surprisingly the crowd was very receptive despite the lack of an eventual drop. One disappointment came from the lack of the choir that has been popping up on his other dates, but we suspect the venue’s size limitations prevented the crew from incorporating the choir successfully in the stage layout. Despite the choir’s absence, the production managed to entrance the crowd and took attendees to a rave church.

Photo: Ben Weickert Photography

Overall, Tchami’s Prophecy Tour proved an artist doesn’t need bigroom bangers to tour with an elaborate production to a sold-out crowd. Despite the relative lack of big drops, the crowd danced and jumped with such energy it’s a wonder Tchami hadn’t toured like this already. It could be a sign of the changing times in the electronic music world, but we openly embrace an age where an artist can promote togetherness through house. We look forward to seeing what’s next for Tchami’s live shows.

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Tchami’s Prophecy Tour Takes House Music to New Heights [Event Review]

EXCLUSIVE: PRXZM Shares A New Batch of EDM Valentine’s For 2017

It’s that time of year again!

EDM lovers will once again either wallow in loneliness (or embrace it), or they’ll find a rave bae and go to all the shows and have a grand old time. But if you want to show your loved ones that you care in a more personal fashion, duo PRXZM has you covered.

They’ve once again assembled the best in EDM Valentine’s Cards, with everyone from Zomboy to Jauz to Rukes to choose from, for just that perfect personal touch. With puns a plenty, you’re sure to enjoy these for months to come.

Go follow PRXZM on Facebook and Twitter for more antics like this!

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: EXCLUSIVE: PRXZM Shares A New Batch of EDM Valentine’s For 2017

Slaptop Release Official Music Video for “Another Life” feat. Geneva White

San Francisco based producer, Slaptop, has set himself up for an exciting 2017. Having just started his own imprint label, Sunsquad Records, he is set to release his debut album on it on March 3rd. To give us a hint of what to expect from the album, Slaptop has released three singles, one of which just received an invigorating music video.

The video for “Another Life” follows a group of friends as they travel from location to location in San Francisco. As Geneva White sings about waking in another life, we see the group of happy folks dancing around a beach, dancing in an attic rave, enjoying themselves at a restaurant, and roller skating. All these scenes are placed over the lush, deep house plucks carefully constructed by Slaptop. This video and song will have you up and out of your seat ready to take on the world!

Check out the music video here:

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Slaptop Release Official Music Video for “Another Life” feat. Geneva White

PatrickReza – Choices [Free Download]

Of all the electronic music coming out these days, there’s very little of it that I would describe as “ravey” – it’s just not a word I use all that often. Then again, I hadn’t yet heard PatrickReza’s “Choices.”

Beginning with some heavily distorted pads and moving onto a full-fledged, ADHD drop with swirling synths and frenetic percussion, when this drops, you can expect a full dose of cryo and insane lasers. It goes into a short bridge before once again descending into absolute rave madness.

What “Choices” does so well is in taking popular EDM tropes like the playful synths or the high-pitched vocals and chops and actually making a song out of it, rather than just a “track.” Check it out below and see what I mean:

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: PatrickReza – Choices [Free Download]

The Holy Ship! FOMO Is Real [Video]

As HARD events’ spectacle of the seas, Holy Ship! is now in its fifth year, and damned if I don’t get to sail on its glorious seas and rave to its ravenous beats before I leave this Earth. It’s rare to see such camaraderie during shows, but the Shipfam rolls thick with the best of vibes. Honestly, everyone is just hangin’ out, both artists and fans alike in an environment unlike anything else. Impromptu Griz and Odesza busks, Holy Ship Allstar B2B sets, an ocean breeze flowing over a topdeck stage… hard to believe all of this is a real thing. Once again aboard the MSC Divina, Holy Ship! has returned from its first journey of the year, and we’ll never know what exactly happened on the magical voyage. But thanks to Glenjamn, at least we’ll have some kind of idea.

The handcam videographer has taken it upon himself to document the ship’s behind the scenes happenings and share them with the world. Now that the MSC Divina has returned to shore, Glenjamn has uploaded things like Valentino Khan and crew questing for some grub…

Holy Ship Allstars serving up a rowdy topdeck set…

Destructo’s revered sunrise sermon…

Rudimental slaying the crew with some jungle…

And that epic back2back known as Dillstradamus (Dillon Francis + Flosstradamus).

 

H/T Dancing Astronaut

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: The Holy Ship! FOMO Is Real [Video]

Swedish House Mafia’s Last Show Ever At Ultra 2013 [Video]

10649084_1010627968963305_3437918529641673585_oFor this week’s flashback Friday, we are taken back to the end of an era. It’s coming up on almost two years since the disbandment of Swedish House Mafia and most of us have yet to move on from the transition. Yes, Axwell / Ingrosso are great and Steve Angello is also doing well, but I can’t help but feel a void that their individual acts cannot fill.

The reality of the situation is that for those who entered the EDM scene circa 2009-2011, Swedish House Mafia most likely played a vital role in their introduction and immersion in the EDM culture. With their departure, we are older and wiser and our tastes have changed and evolved; yet, as we look back on what it was like just a few years ago, we can’t help but get a good kick in the nostalgia feels.

Relive the end of the Swedish House Mafia below:

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Swedish House Mafia’s Last Show Ever At Ultra 2013 [Video]

Borgeous, Whoo Kidd, Wiz Khalifa, & Waka Flacka “Toast” To The Weeknd [Free Download]

borgeous-wiz-khalifa-waka-flocka-flame-toast-youredm

Get ready for the trillest track yet. The infamous Borgeous teamed up with Whookid, along with two of rap’s biggest stars, Waka Flocka Flame and Wiz Khalifa, for an absolute monster of a song, “Toast“. Borgeous has a knack for creating the most electrifying hits that simply turn dance floors into pandemonium. This latest track is no exception as Waka and Wiz both provide an incredible presence to this banger, making you just want to grab a drink and turn up with the crew. I couldn’t think of a better song to kick this weekend off, be sure to listen below and grab the free download as well!

This article was first published on Your EDM.
Source: Borgeous, Whoo Kidd, Wiz Khalifa, & Waka Flacka “Toast” To The Weeknd [Free Download]